After saying goodbye to our French fellow campers, Annie and Jean Paul, we set off for Klamath Falls. Driving through a very wide flat valley, this morning’s scenery was all agricultural. Pastureland with thousands of grazing beef cattle. Farmers seem to follow more traditional methods here. The cattle are all out in fields peacefully feeding on grass. The hay bales are all beautifully stacked in huge barns. No sign of any plastic wrapping here.
Klamath Falls was an odd town. Quite sizeable but really quiet in the centre. We looked for a Walmart to use their wifi and found one on the outskirts. In fact everything seemed to happen on the highways leading out of the town. Commerce and retail, either along the highway or in parks off to the sides.
We achieved quite a bit during our stay at Walmart. We needed some provisions, so while I was shopping and looking for an ATM for more funds, Dennis managed to publish 3 day’s worth of blogs. After a dearth of wifi we both managed to read emails and get a bit up to date with correspondence.
It was lovely to get news from Thomas and Chantal. A Swiss couple we met up in the very north of Canada. Amazing to think how many miles ago that was now. Sadly their jeep has worn out and they have returned to Switzerland to purchase a new vehicle and replan their trip. We may still meet again in South America!
Setting off again we took the 139 to Alturas. Once out of town we realised we had forgotten to get fuel. We decided not to turn back, but soon passed a sign advising no fuel for 72 miles. Dennis said we had plenty!
Still in the same broad valley, the agriculture changed from livestock to crops. Really brilliant green fields of alfalfa. some of which was starting to be harvested. Fields of potatoes. Also being harvested. Golden fields of stubble. The grain already in. Many fields have already been prepared for re-sowing, or the farmers were out on their huge machines working away.
We took a diversion to Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge. A prime spot for migrating birds and a winter home for bald eagles. There were many water birds. All sorts of ducks and geese, but from the road we could only see them with binoculars. Earlier in the day on one of the lakes we passed we had seen white pelicans. Stopping for lunch on the edge of the Refuge, we had a very nice salad and fruit. It was beautifully warm in the sun.
At some point during our diversion to Klamath Basin we crossed the border into California. I only knew this because there is a note about the Refuge in Lonely Planet, under the California section. Afterwards all the signs with the road number had “California” across the top too.
Soon after leaving our lunch spot we entered the Modoc National Forest. Very different scenery here. Really dry. Brown grasses and scrubby vegetation with small conifers, mainly on the slopes. Not terribly inspiring.
Shortly before we reached Alturas the engine started to falter. A lack of diesel. Fortunately all the jerry canes were full so Dennis topped us up a bit. Once in Alturas we bought more diesel. Much more expensive than in Oregon though.
By this time it was around 4pm and we hoped to find camping in Alturas. On the far side of town a sign directed us to camping. We found a small RV Park just off the main road, but thought this couldn’t be it. Carrying on for 2 or 3 miles it became obvious it must have been the campsite the sign was referring to. Returning we were met with a large sign saying “Full”. So, back on the road again. A short distance down the road there was another camping sign. No sign of any camping though. Turning off to investigate we finished up in a sort of builders yard. We gave up and headed out of town.
We were still within the Modoc National Forest Area and land set aside for wildlife preservation. Very wild and unpopulated. Almost immediately we saw a sign saying no rest place for 63 miles. That does not bode well for finding any camping I thought. However, we continued. Dennis was considering driving up to one of the occasional farms and asking if we could camp. While we were discussing what to do we came into a tiny place called Likely. I saw a sign advertising Likely Place Golf and RV Resort. It sounded very grand and unexpected in this location, but we decided to give it a try.
Turning off to find it we came to a grand gated entrance with flags. all nicely manicured I imagined it wouldn’t be the sort of place that would accept campers with a tent. What a pleasant surprise. They were really welcoming and had a few tent sites. Only one was booked, so we had the pick of the rest and found a lovely, quiet flat spot. As an added bonus there is wifi, a laundry and lovely facilities. All for $18. Less than we have been paying for a State Park campsite.
Sorry no pictures today. I think we overdosed on the gorgeous scenery at Crater Lake yesterday, so didn’t even pick up the camera today.